Anatomy of the spine
Our spine is made up of 33 bones called the vertebrae. These are separated by intervertebral discs. The spine has several jobs, but the main ones are to support us and allow movement. The vertebrae themselves all share a basic common structure. They have an anterior vertebral body and a posterior vertebral arch. The part we are interested in is the body part. This is essentially the weight-bearing component.
Sometimes referred to as vertebral body compression fractures, this is where there is a fracture through to the vertebrae. This may occur through trauma or disease. The main cause, however, is osteoporosis. Although studies have shown that one out of every two women and one out of every five men will break a bone as a result of osteoporosis, it remains a much under-diagnosed condition. Some call it the “silent disease “ as many people are unaware they have it until that first fracture.
If someone has a spinal fracture and it is left untreated, they may develop “kyphosis “. This is when someone’s back can become rounded and humplike.
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